The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:
The Secretary-General takes note of the provisional results of the presidential election announced today by the Ministry of Interior of Gabon. He expresses his deep concern about the reported acts of arson and clashes between protesters and security forces in the capital Libreville.
The Secretary-General urges all concerned political leaders and their supporters to refrain from further acts that could undermine the peace and stability of the country. He also calls on the authorities to ensure that the national security forces exercise maximum restraint in their response to protests. He reiterates his call on all political leaders to address their differences peacefully and to address any disputes they may have through existing constitutional and legal channels.
The Secretary-General has requested his Special Representative for Central Africa and Head of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa, Abdoulaye Bathily, to accompany the political stakeholders in Gabon in their efforts to calm the situation and to peacefully resolve the contentious issues emanating from the electoral process.
The Secretary-General will continue to monitor the situation closely.